Game Economy in:

The Settlers 7






October 2019 - November 2019

Analysis of Game economy in "The Settlers"

Machinations, Unity



In this project I wanted to learn the basics of economy. To achieve a basic understanding of game economy I started analysing a game called "The Settlers 7 - paths to a kingdom".

I used the 'Machinations' Framework to visualize my understanding of the basic economy of the game:

This here is a 'Unity' -version of the prototype. At the moment only the building, upgrading, destroying and recourse gathering is implemented. 

'The Settlers 7' - analysis

'The Settler' is a game series, where the player has to build, manage and expand their village. Player start by building a small economy to gather basic recourses, like wood, stone and food. These basic recourses are then used to obtain other recourses, like gold and iron, to create an army to expand their village. Expanding the village is crucial and cannot be avoided, because recourses are limited. The map is cut into different areas, which contain pools of recourses. The player, who can obtain these limited recourses faster is usually the winner. After playing the campaign and created my first level with the built-in level editor, I started investigating the second level of the campaign. I analysed the second level, because it completly focuses on creating a basic economy.

The 'Machinations' - prototype

With the 'machinations' prototype I tried to recreate the economy of the second level. The default entities of the level are the same as in the prototype, but they are exchangeable, which allows the player to test out, what happens when some you only start with wood for example. In the following I will explain each part: First the players recourses, which are stored in pools: This is a switch, which allows you to change between the buildings to build. There is another switch attached to the lodge, which presents the location the lodge was built. It is neccessary to now, if there are trees or fish next to the lodge: Now for the areas. In this prototype are only two areas. The second area is locked, until you send 5 'pikemen' into battle. Each one of them contains pools of different recourses: Next the different buildings: I implemented two lodges. One for the forrest, which contains the 'Timber' (wood-gathering) upgrade and the 'Woodcutter' (Wood into plank) upgrade and another for the beach, where you can build fisher to access the fish pools. After selecting, where to build the next lodge, press on the plank-entity in the player's recourses to provide planks for the building process. Click on the desired upgrade afterwards, which will use 1 tool. The mountain shelter contains the quarry-/ gold- and coalupgrade. The coal and goldupgrades are locked, until you conquer the second area. To build a mountain shelter press on the 'build mountain shelter' - button, which will drain the recourses needed: The noble residence is built the same way as the mountain shelter: Now for the last part: Building an army. After gathering enough recourses, you can press on the convert button next to the military-unit-pool. To send your pikemen to battle, select the number of pikemen you want and then click on the pikemen pool. After that click on the 'send to battle' button to send them into battle. You can create musketeers the same way. You win in the prototype after creating 10 musketeers and 5 pikemen:

'The Settlers 7" - campaign: Level 2

I will refer to this section, when I talk about my 'machinations'-prototype. In this level your goal is to conquer three areas, each of them guarded by enemy soldiers. You win after conquering the last area, which is guarded the most of course. The first area to conquer is controlled by 4 'pikemen', which means that the player needs at least 5 'pikemen' to obtain the first area. Pikemen are a military units obtained through the tavern, which will trade recourses for military units. Each one of them costs 4 'gold' and 1 'food'. The player starts with 3 'pikemen', 20 'gold' and 3 'food', which is already enough to conquer the next area, but not enough to conquer the rest. The player needs to create a basic economy first. To create a basic economy, the player needs to build 'converters' to be able to access the 'wood' and 'stone' pools first and another to cut the 'wood' into 'planks'. The player needs to build specific buildings first, which can be upgraded to 'converters'. Most of the buildings in this game allow the player to connect up to three upgrades to them. For example to obtain the stonemine, the player needs to build a 'mountain shelter' first and upgrade it with a 'quarry'. You can connect the same upgrade multiple times to one building to improve its gathering speed. This means to obtain the first two basic recourses (stone and wood) the player needs to build a 'mountain shelter' next to the stone mine in his starting area and a 'lodge' with a 'woodcutter' upgrade to convert the trees around his starting are into 'wood'. After that he needs to upgrade a 'lodge' with the 'sawmill' upgrade, which converts 'wood' into 'planks', which can be used to build. Because the starting area is covered with barren soil, the player needs another way of obtaining 'food' than just using a farm, which creates an ulimited amount of 'wheat', which can be converted into 'food'. The starting area is surrounded with places to fish. 'Fish' can be optained through a 'fisher' upgrade, which can be attached to a 'lodge'. Now, after creating this basic economy, the player can finally start building military units ('pikemen'). The player can conquer the next area after creating his fifth 'pikeman'. After conquering the next are, the player now has access to fertile soil and another fishing place. There are mines to obtain 'coal' and 'gold ore' as well, which means the player has to create new mountain shelters with new upgrades to obtain these pools. The player needs another building to create 'gold' with these to recourses, a 'noble residence' with a 'gold mint' upgrade. Now the player has enough 'gold' and 'food' to create even more 'pikemen' to conquer the next area, which is again protected by 4 'pikemen'. Now the player only needs to conquer one more area to win, but as I already mentioned is this one the most protected one. The last area is protected by a tower, which cannot be da maged by pikemen and 4 more 'pikemen'. The player needs another military unit, the 'musketeer'. This unit costs 4 gold and one 'fancy food', which means that the player only needs to obtain 'fancy food' now. To obtain 'fancy food' the player needs to build a lodge next to a forrest with wildlife and upgrade it with a 'hunter' to obtain 'meat'. After that he needs to upgrade a 'noble residence' with a 'butcher', who will turn 'meat' into 'fancy meat'. The player needs 10 'musketeers' to take down the tower and up to 5 'pikemen' to deal with the enemy 'pikemen' after the tower. After defeating the tower and the 'pikemen' the player wins.

The 'Unity' - prototype

DISCLAIMER: The tree- and buildingmodels used are not created by me. For more information look into the 'Sources and Inspiration' - tab. This is a prototype I created right after the 'Machinations' one. It is fully functional, when it comes to recourse gathering. You can fully customize the amount of recourses on the map and the amount of pools. The buildings work like the ones in machinations. The buildings implemented: Lodge, mointain shelter, noble residence My plan is to add military unity, fighting and conquering other areas later.

Sources/ Inspiration

Building and tree assets were not created by me: Asset-store link: For the building feature I took inspiration from this video: If there are problems: Contact me